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Something Cool: ETG Retreat

This story about an English Talk Group retreat was written by Career Missionary Benjamin Helge, who serves in the Czech Republic. Ben oversees GEOs and their work in Russia, as well as working himself with the people of Havířov-Šumbark through English groups, teaching in local schools, and more.

By: Benjamin Helge

A lego road, a book and some chicken hearts. Not really what we were expecting to see during our latest English Talk Group (ETG) Víkendovka (weekend retreat). Yet one evening, the individual giving our devotion (Kuba) brought out these items.

The ETG group at the January 2017 retreat. (Photo courtesy of Benjamin Helge).

From January 20-22, ETG spent time in the Beskydy mountains playing games, speaking English, relaxing, hiking, and enjoying the company of each other. Our theme, “Something Cool,” provided the opportunity for guests to share with our group the Gospel in their own “cool way.”

Working together to clean up after a group meal during the ETG retreat in January 2017. (Photo courtesy of Benjamin Helge).

This was ETG’s fifth weekend retreat since it began in Havířov-Šumbark in early 2014. ETG exists to connect students to the Gospel through English. Any student 13-26 (the range is flexible though) can join ETG for our once a week gatherings. ETG then hosts extra events, parties, and sessions to further connect this group to the Lutheran community. The weekend retreat serves as one means of doing this. This winter, our retreat had us bundled up by the fireplace, playing out in the snow, and laughing (a lot).

While in the mountains, this mixture of both Christians and non-believers gathered each day to hear the Gospel. And that is what Kuba shared through His illustration mentioned above: the road, the book and the hearts pointed us to John 14:6 and Jesus, the way, the truth and the life.

The beautiful scenery made a great backdrop for proclaiming the Gospel and growing together over the weekend retreat. (Photo courtesy of Benjamin Helge).

God continues to work through ETG as a way for people to hear His Gospel and be connected to His church. Praise be to Him who has done and always does wondrous things.

  • Learn more about ETG.
  • Learn more about Benjamin Helge’s work.
  • Pray for ETG and the unbelievers who often join their group, that the Gospel would continue to be proclaimed and would bring more students to the waters of Holy Baptism.

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